[OSGeo-Discuss] The importance of a project's license

Seven (aka Arnulf) seven at arnulf.us
Sat Jul 28 09:33:41 PDT 2012

Hash: SHA1

On 28.07.2012 05:44, Andrew Ross wrote:
> On 27 July 2012 18:43, Markus Neteler <neteler at osgeo.org 
> <mailto:neteler at osgeo.org>> wrote:
> On Fri, Jul 27, 2012 at 3:08 PM, Andrew Ross 
> <andrew.ross at eclipse.org <mailto:andrew.ross at eclipse.org>> wrote: 
> ...
>> A project can decide what makes the most sense for them.
> Note that for long-term projects a license change is rather
> difficult to realize (especially if older contributors are no
> longer traceable..).
> Markus
> Markus,
> Agreed. This is one of many reasons why this discussion is so
> important, even if we'd rather be drinking beer. ;-)
> If you think you might ever consider re-licensing your project,
> then it's not a bad idea to consider contribution agreements. They
> can make the process to re-license, should you ever decide to, a
> lot less pain & effort.
> I hope that it isn't lost in the discussion that it really isn't
> about a given license winning or dying even if that's interesting
> to data junkies like us. It's about the project's goals, and
> hopefully reducing friction towards achieving them.
> Andrew

This is why OSGeo offers projects to transfer copyright of all their
software to OSGeo as an organization. In that case it is easy to keep
licensing up to date. From that point onwards it simply requires
sticking to the coding rules and adding the appropriate header to any
new code. Done.

Some OSGeo projects chose to do that, some not. But in OSGeo there is
no obligation to do this and it is up to the current copyright holders
and contributors what they prefer.


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